CES 2011: Sony Press Event

by: Dan -
More On: CES 2011
Sony changed up their press event and booth a bit this year, opting for an open stage and single massive rear projected screen instead of the enclosed stage they have had the last several years. After seeing what was planned, now we know why.  The show opened with a massive 3D montage of Sony products, games, music and movies that lasted for several minutes. Once that completed, Sir Howard Stringer introduced us to Seth Rogen and Jay Chou as well as the car from The Green Hornet. After some small talk and several Rogen jokes, we were shown a 3D extended clip of the movie. Looks pretty darn good IMO.

After clearing the Green Hornet stuff from the stage, Stringer went through the numbers and new 2011 3D products. These included 3net (3D Channel with Discovery, Sony and IMAX), upcoming movies and other partner related topics. He then introduced Hiroshi Yoshioka to talk more about the new personal 3D and other products. This included new Bloggies, Camcorders, VAIOs and Bravia TVs. One cool little gadget he talked about was a prototype 3D personal display called the 3D Cyclops. Yoshioka mentions that he was playing Gran Turismo 5 with it and that not even his wife could disturb him. Other prototypes are 3D glasses-free displays, including two LCD models and an OLED model.

Stringer came back and talked at length about Qriocity, the Sony video content service. It was later announced that it will be bringing music as well and they used a PS3 to demo the interface. Phil Molyneux came up on stage next and spoke at length about the new Sony TV offerings in 2011 as well as the cameras, VAIOs and so on. One interesting nugget is that some of new Bravias will be able to use IPTV with Time Warner customers, so the entire TW offerings (sans DVR) will be in the TV and no set top box will be required.

What wasn’t announced was a PlayStation phone. About the closest we came was the Xperia Arc, which is slim, light and utilizes the Android Gingerbread. From the phone we were shown, there are no PlayStation distinguishing buttons or XrossMediaBar on it. It is slated for a Q1 release which was the rumored PlayStation phone schedule, so draw your own conclusions.

Unfortunately, there was very little related to gaming in their press event. Other than the debut trailer in 3D of Uncharted 3, the only other major PS3 mention was about the Qriocity music system being made available across all Sony devices. The event mostly focused on expanding last year’s big news, which was 3D and connected products. To sum up the gaming mentions:
  • PSN has over 60 Million worldwide accounts
  • Opening video showed Fight w/move and Killzone 3 3D footage
  • VAIO 3D gaming notebooks introduced
  • GT5 sold 5.5 million units in first two months
  • Fight and Killzone 3 shots in opening montage

The booth also looked pretty barren of Sony gaming, but I will take a closer look later in the week to see what is actually on display besides Uncharted 3 trailer.

The Sony event ended with a presentation by Cirque du Soleil - Viva ELVIS cast on the stage. Check out the video.

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